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Overdose becomes homicide

March 8, 2011
Jenn Brookens — Staff Writer

FAIRMONT - A 33-year-old Fairmont woman, Tamara Lynn Hill, is facing a third-degree murder charge for allegedly allowing a friend to take her prescribed narcotics, causing his death.

Hill was prescribed the drug Fentanyl - a powerful Schedule II opiate for chronic pain. Thomas Anderson, 39, reportedly took some of the Fentanyl patches while at Hill's residence on Oct. 8.

According to information from the Fairmont Police Department:

Shortly after 1 p.m. Oct. 12, police responded to a call about a deceased person. At Anderson's residence, police made contact with Hill and her husband. A deceased man was found on the floor in front of a computer desk. He was identified as Anderson, and it appeared he had been dead for several days.

The Hills reported they had been trying to contact Anderson all weekend, with their last contact with him on Oct. 8. The couple both had tried to call Anderson several times, along with going to his residence and had gotten no response.

On Oct. 12, they got into Anderson's residence through an unlocked window and found his body.

While processing the scene, police found a prescription package of Fentanyl and drug paraphernalia under Anderson's body, with the paraphernalia set up to smoke the drug. On the computer screen was information on how to smoke Fentanyl.

There were other packages of Fentanyl found. All had prescription labels for Hill. Police believe Anderson smoked one of the Fentanyl patched prescribed to Hill, then died.

When questioned, Hill said she had used Fentanyl for a long time, and that she had some out on her table on a day when Anderson came over, but that she did not sell or give any to him. She mentioned she was missing some patches and thought Anderson might have taken them.

However, she later admitted she had allowed Anderson to take the patches. She said she told him "No" when he asked if he could have some, but later saw Anderson take some of the patches and didn't stop him.

In a second interview, Hill said she warned Anderson that, "You don't want to mess with that," and Anderson then said, "Come on," and she allowed him to take the patches. She admitted she was worried about Anderson having the patches when she could not make contact with him afterward.

In November, the autopsy report revealed Anderson's death was caused by acture Fentanyl toxicity.

Cell phone records show Hill and her husband made attempts to contact Anderson several times between Oct. 9 and Oct. 12.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Web site states Fentanyl is 100 times more potent that morphine, and is sometimes abused as a heroin substitute. However, the drug is more potent than heroin and results in frequent overdoses that lead to respiratory depression and death.

Hill made her first court appearance Monday in Martin County. Bail was set at $40,000.

Third-degree murder carries a maximum penalty of 25 years in prison and a $40,000 fine.



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